Out with the old and in with the new! Thais celebrate their traditional New Year in April with Songkran Festival, but the start of the Gregorian new year is also celebrated across the country, with the capital Bangkok putting on the best countdown events. New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day are official holidays, so while that means some mom-and-pop shops may be shuttered, most of the city – including the majority of tourist attractions and shopping centres – remain open for business.
Where to celebrate New Year’s Eve in Bangkok
As with any other day, New Year’s Eve in Bangkok can be as wild or peaceful as you want it to be. To end the year with a bang, CentralWorld puts on one of the city’s most long-running year-end parties. The roads in front of the shopping destination are temporarily pedestrianised for the occasion, allowing throngs of revellers to enjoy concerts, activities, and a firework display right in the heart of the city.
Over by Chao Phraya River, Asiatique and IconSiam both also put on a boisterous New Year’s Eve countdown celebration including light and sound performances, concerts, and fireworks displays over the river. Rooftop restaurants and bars across the city also get into the countdown game with their own festivities.
Getting around on New Year’s Eve in Bangkok
In preparation for New Year’s Eve countdown in front of CentralWorld, several roads in the heart of Bangkok are closed to traffic, including from Ratchadamri Road from Ratchaprasong to Pratunam (Watergate). Ideally, try to stay within walking distance to your countdown party of choice. Alternatively, public transportation in recent years have extended their hours to accommodate revellers getting home after the countdown, with the BTS skytrain and MRT subway typically extending their operation hours from midnight to 2 a.m.